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4:05 Navan, 20th Feb – Ten Up Novices Chase (G2)

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4:05 NaThere are plenty of horses running at Navan on Sunday as a preparation for the Cheltenham Festival and it can be hard to sift through the runners to find the horses most likely to be primed for now instead of March, but FAROUK D’ALENE fits the bill. Gordon Elliott has already stated that the Brown Advisory at the Festival is his aim, but that looks a hot renewal and this looks a very winnable opportunity for his son of Racinger to take on route. He was beaten on the line in a Grade 1 over Christmas at Limerick, on soft ground, and the form of that race has been well advertised by the winner Master McShee in the interim. Whilst he was last seen finishing 2nd to Stattler in a Grade 3 at Naas, beaten less than 2-lengths, with last year’s Albert Bartlett winner a distant 3rd. A repeat of either of those 2 efforts should be enough to land this prize and whilst he may not be up to the heights of Bravemansgame or Galopin des Champs at the Festival, he has shown more than enough to suggest he can win at this level.

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